>> Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Continuing onward on my quest to highlight some of the people who are actively working to make the world better, do the right thing, I thought I'd pass along this interview with Dr. Peter Pronovost, one of those making the world better.
Dr. Provonost set up a program to reduce secondary infections at the Intensive Care Unit at John Hopkins. Not using nuclear weapons or a miracle cure, but by creating a checklist and holding doctors (and everyone else) to it. Part of the process involves empowering nurses, giving them power to stop the process if the doctor hasn't washed his hands or is missing something critical.
I love this for any number of reasons, not the least of which is that reducing infections saves lives, saves money and reduce time in the hospital. It is providing good care. But, more than the intent, I like that his process has been successful. His checklist is credited with saving 1500 lives and $100 million in Michigan in a single eighteen month period.
Success is good.
But I also like it from my safety engineer persona. He saw a preventable hazard and addressed it, knowing it could be prevented. That's what safety engineers do. Sure, we often work in risky ventures where there are some unknowns we can't see coming and some issues we just can't fix. But we push to fix what we can fix. When he talked about stopping a surgery because a patient had a latex allergy, I could so have been there.
Dr. Provonost wants secondary infections from hospitals to become a thing of the past. And he has a method with a good track record for doing so.
That's doin' good. Good for him. Good for all of us.
I respect that.